Smell Like The Future: Robert Piguet Futur Perfume

Smell Like The Future: Robert Piguet Futur Perfume

Robert Piguet Futur is one of their original fragrances, originally released in the 60s.  At some point it was discontinued, likely due in part to the 60+ ingredients in the original version. Yesterday’s Perfumes has an enchanting review of the vintage formula. It’s been re-released and reworked with published notes of  bergamot, neroli, violet, jasmine, ylang, vetiver, cedar, patchouli. This perfume makes me think of the sounds of brilliantly discordant jazz. It seems haphazard but somehow it works and is strangely beautiful.

Futur is a “green” scent, and true to a good green perfume, I smell a ton of forest and resinous galbanum. It’s not listed as an ingredient but that may just be because by today’s perfume note listing standards, it’s more about advertising than actually listing the “notes”. My first impression of Futur is neon Irish Spring soap in a field of wildflowers. The floral notes just sing, in a gorgeous classical perfume way. I get an impression of floral/green classics like Joy, Ma Griffe, a hint of Miss Dior (original) and even a bit of Guerlain Chamade. The fresh florals give way to sexy jasmine and ylang and then become smoky vetiver. It’s like a ghost of classic perfumes with a crisp clean modern perfume built around it. It is clean and sexy at the same time – the sexy has something to with the woodsy patchouli base. It’s almost like an incense with that intoxicating smoky resinous goodness. I feel engergized when I wear Futur, and like I can do anything. Futur can go from jeans to the boardroom to a night out on the town. I love it, and wish I could try the parfum/extrait version – it must be so dense and gorgeous. The chewy mouth watering green-ness of Futur is addictive. I huff my wrists when I wear it.

Verdict is love, but I would caution buying this without sniffing. It’s not for the faint of heart, even though in the end it dries down to a sexy skin scent that smells like heaven to me. It’s not easy to love, and it doesn’t have the mass appeal of, say, Pink Sugar. If you are willing to step outside of the average perfume box and smell special, you should sniff it out. Also – if you like Irish Spring. Manly, yes, but I like it too….

 

Robert Piguet perfumes are available at specialty department stores, listed here on their website. And at The Perfume Shoppe in Canada. I don’t see Futur on their site but perhaps they can order it in. Ogilvy in Montreal carries the line as well.

Who Doesn’t Want Lovely Jubblies?

Who Doesn’t Want Lovely Jubblies?

Seriously? Is there anyone? Ok, just to be clear, jubblies is a cute word which is British slang for “breasts”. I don’t know why, but I like it. It sounds so….happy. Happy, perky and bouncy even. See what I did there?

My, my, Miss Mansfield, what lovely jubblies you have….

Anyways…LUSH has a cream called Lovely Jubblies for those of use who would like a delicately fragrant, firm and pert chest. This breast cream is full of rich and delicious moisturizing & skin tone improving ingredients like coco butter, almond oil, jojoba oil and rosehip oil. LUSH uses cold-pressed organic oils and fresh flower infusions with the aim of tightening and firming the skin, as well as improving skin tone and elasticity. Then there are the “delicately fragrant” ingredients, which are gorgeous and feminine, almost to the point of being dangerous. Rose, jasmine, orange blossom, orange blossom honey (fragrant AND good for your skin) and ylang ylang.  There is a delicate lily note hiding in there – Tiger lilies actually. They apparently have astringent properties and are often used to tighten the skin- perfect for “firming up wobbly bits”.These are all beautiful scents on their own, but downright intoxicating when combined. Especially with the sweet creamy base of coco butter. Mouth-watering, almost. The cream has a lovely texture, without the greasy slippery base of the ubiquitous silicone based products. Coco butter isn’t greasy, and basically just soaks in to beautifully moisturize. So I am using this on more than just my “jubblies”. It soothes and smoothes the skin, and leaves only soft scented skin behind. I use it on my chest, my neck, as well as on my stomach, thighs…and more. It is wonderful on knees and elbows. Have I noticed a marked improvement? Not really, but I don’t ever use any product expecting miracles. Does my skin feel soft, smooth and does it smell good? Absolutely. I really like using LUSH Lovely Jubblies at bedtime, or after the bath. The scent and soothing ritual of the application just feels good, and the scent has encouraged sweet dreams….

Verdict? LOVE. The floral notes in this cream are all my favourites, and are a home run for me. They work beautifully with any of my jasmine, rose or orange blossom perfumes beautifully. I can detect the provocative and sensual scent emanating from my decolletage for a few hours after application. Pampering myself with little rituals like this make me feel…well, sexy. And that’s a good thing.

*This is a scented product. If you are sensitive to fragrance, I would recommend testing it in-store before buying.

Lush Lovely Jubblies is available at LUSH Stores for around $25.

Annick Goutal Songes Has Me Dreaming of Jasmine

Annick Goutal Songes Has Me Dreaming of Jasmine



 

Annick Goutal Songes is a deeply sexy and lush jasmine perfume. For over-the-top, stiletto heels & red lipstick sexy, Annick Goutal Passion is really the queen, but Songes is the queen of sultry summer perfumes that are bursting with white florals and hot skin. I’d say sweaty skin, but that’s not quite poetic enough for an Annick Goutal perfume. I prefer the more floral eau de toilette to the more vanillic eau de parfum. Songes is like a steamy hot summer day, the kind that makes you want to move slowly, and perhaps not at all. The word that comes to mind is “languid”. 

…the sweet life, indeed
Songes starts out by coming on to you in the most shameless way. She is not hiding her ripe & succulent jasmine, ylang and frangipani, but instead sheds everything and just lies back on a bed overflowing with intoxicating white flowers. Slowly the warm cushy scent of gentle vanilla wafts up from the lush bed of flowers, adding a sweet and edible aspect that makes you want to bury your nose in this scent. Songes was allegedly inspired by a walk through an exotic garden on the island of Mauritius at night fall. As the air cools, the heat from the gardens rise and the tantalizing scent of tropical flowers surround you like a spell. You will need to find a slowly swaying hammock in a cool shady forrest, and lie down, while you float away on a jasmine-y cloud of flowers.
Night blooming jasmine; cestrum nocturnum
What makes Annick Goutal Songes sexy is that it comes on strong then pulls back a little. The heady and seductive scent that draws you in slowly subsides and becomes part of your skin, meaning if anyone wants to smell it, they will have to get close. And because the air is sweltering, getting closer will only make things, well, hotter. Best place to wear it? As Chanel would say, wear perfume where you want to be kissed.
Diptyque Voile Satin Is A Luxe & Delicious Body Oil

Diptyque Voile Satin Is A Luxe & Delicious Body Oil

Diptyque is a gorgeous French perfume house. I have worn some of their perfumes in the past but for some reason I don’t have one in my collection presently. Hmmm….must rectify that. Anyways, I recently decided to get some Diptyque Voile Satin (translates to “satin veil”- isn’t that lovely?) Body Oil as I kept reading how it was chock full of jasmine and ylang and other lovely floral notes that I love.  I had to have it and bought it unsniffed. When I got it home, I found it strong for some reason and was afraid I wouldn’t wear it. Not sure why, as subsequent sniffs and applications basically have left me swooning. The base of avocado and urucum oil are amazingly rich and emollient, and Voile Satin has that wonderful “dry oil”texture. It is fine textured and melts into the skin, leaving a lovely satin appearance and absolutely beautiful lingering fragrance behind.

Dewy jasmine…
Ylang ylang blossom

Saffron

I do smell the delightful and gentle blend of jasmine and ylang but it is the saffron that really adds a something special to that floral confection.  Saffron is a spice with a dusty floral peppery scent, but in perfume I’d say it is more floral than spicy. There is a slight mouth watering character to saffron as well, and it really plays off the jasmine and ylang beautifully, tempering the sweetness with what feels like a creamy gentle amber. I don’t think I would use it head to toe as a moisturizer as it does have enough scent to work as a soft perfume. I like to use it strategically…a little on my legs, on my arms and perhaps my decolletage. It gives a gorgeous glow to skin and will be perfect in warmer weather when we ditch the stockings and want our legs to look, well, gorgeous. If I apply it at bedtime, as I am wont to do, I can still smell gentle wafts in the morning. Did I mention it is a hair oil as well? So before I style my towel dried hair, I spritz the palms of my hands with just a bit of oil and pass it through the ends of my hair. It softens and smooths, and the scent is divine. A gentle oil scent I can use head to toe? Yes please. Verdict? LOVE.

Diptyque Voile Satin is around $60 for a 100ml bottle, and is available where Diptyque Body Products are sold, from their website and from Luckyscent.

The Understated Beauty of L’Artisan Parfumeur Vanilia

The Understated Beauty of L’Artisan Parfumeur Vanilia

vanilla-flowers

L’Artisan Parfumeur is the second niche line I fell for, when I sniffed their gorgeous fruity musk scent, Mure et Musc Extreme in 1998 while shopping in New York. There was something so transparent and “different” about the line,  and the scents seemed so odd compared to the standard commercial releases. The added novelty of shopping at Barney’s and just being in New York City no doubt shaped my impression of the line, and for that, I am grateful. I have beautiful associations with a beautiful perfume line.

I was already a full fledged perfume junkie and had an overflowing dresser full of bottles from almost all the mainstream lines. At the time I worked for an agent promoting new releases of many lines of perfumes from our humble Canadian Alfred Sung to all the Italian houses (D&G, Versace, Bulgari, Ungaro, etc) as well as Byblos, La Perla and some other more obscure but still mostly mainstream lines. I had OD’d on the 90s powerhouse scents like Mugler Angel, Chanel Allure & Christian Dior Dolce Vita after working in environments where they were being launched, meaning sprayed everywhere. All. The. Time. Mercilessly. To this day I can spot either one of those a mile away as they do not change on anyone’s skin (sorry to any fans, but they don’t) and maintain a screeching linear tone that makes me want to cut my nose off.

My first niche line was Annick Goutal. I had fallen for Annick Goutal probably in 1994 when my local Holt Renfrew (the smallest in Canada) had the line there for a very brief period. Serendipity I’d say, as they carry only the most popular lines due to limited space. Their popular and fresh Eau d’Hadrien (lemon, grapefruit, ylang ylang) became my daytime scent and the sultry Passion (tuberose, ylang, patchouli, vanilla etc) was my nighttime go-to. What I loved most about Annick Goutal was no one I knew had even heard of it. DING DING this was the clincher and soon having a unique perfume that no one else might be wearing became a Very Important Thing.

Back to L’Artisan Parfumeur. Dismissed by many hardcore perfumistas as too bland and mainstream (although a few of their recent releases have been interesting…) I still love this line. They were the first house to do a fig scent and their Premier Figuier is still one of the best creamy fig scents- it was my eldest daughter Emilie’s signature perfume for years. Which is why, as much as I love its green, creamy, powdery and slightly coconut-y scent I can never wear it as it just smells like her. Don’t you hate it when that happens? Funny how we can associate a scent with that person and it becomes impossible to mold it into anything or anyone else.

 

Vanilia is an older scent from the house having been released in 1978. Perhaps it smells a bit like the 70s where high quality ingredients were tossed into perfumes pell-mell, like a soup.  The notes given (or that I have compiled online) are simple- ylang ylang, vanilla bean, amber and sandalwood. There is a fruity note that perhaps comes from the ylang ylang with the vanilla making it almost foody- but it is never too sweet or cloying. It dries down with the amber & sandalwood adding an almost smoky resinous scent, that sits and warms on the skin never becoming cloying or saccharine. The smoke is barely hinted at before it goes and for that I am grateful as I am not a fan of smoky notes. Its more of a soft barely sweet incense. Vanilia is a bit of a shape shifter, one minute being a soft vanilla scent then becoming an amber-y floral. Some have complained that Vanilia is too soft and too ethereal and have wished for an Extreme or more intense version. I think that would take away from the whole point of this scent and I love it just the way it is.

 

Truly one of the oddest vanilla scents I was never quite sure if I liked it. I am not a fan of sugary sweet scents and, if you are looking for straight up vanilla scent, you may be disappointed by Vanilia. If you want to smell like cookie dough or cake, this is not the vanilla for you. This is a grown up vanilla with the smooth relaxed vibe I associate with the 70s. Think soft flowing hair, maybe Indian cotton dresses and long skirts and even YSL Safari jackets. Maybe some George Benson playing in the background while you mix drinks and get the fondue ready. The beautiful yet carefree style of Talitha Getty comes to mind and Vanilia to me smells like effortless bohemian luxury. Luxury is key because there is nothing hippie or head shop about this perfume. Vanilia is for the beautiful people, to wear when you are going skiing in Klosters, or dinner in Biarritz after surfing all day. It isn’t loud and doesn’t try to hard. Like you are wearing just a touch of make up, with your hair down and sporting a carefree attitude, in Vanilia you are enveloped in a soft cashmere wrap that is so fine it’s almost ethereal- you can barely feel it on your skin. 

 

 

News on the internet says Vanilia is discontinued but several retailers I know of have plenty of stock.  The manager at the L’Artisan Parfumeur boutique at Ogilvy in Montreal told me it was not discontinued, and, have it on their price list catalogue they so kindly send me from time to time. Yet, I have decided to get a back up bottle…just in case…

 

L’Artisan Parfumeur is available in Canada at boutiques, and they have a freestanding boutique within Ogilvy Department Store in Montreal.

I Feel Like Purring in Cartier Panthere Parfum

I Feel Like Purring in Cartier Panthere Parfum

 

 

I recently found a bottle of this online- I suppose it is vintage as it is in a bottle style not available for quite awhile. I know this seller and he stocks an incredible array of vintage and hard to find scents. I remember when this oriental floral was launched, in 1986, because at the time I was obsessed with the Cartier Panthere watch. Which I wear pretty much everyday- Cartier jewellery becomes part of you, just like the perfume.

 

Of all the versions the parfum is my favourite. It has the strongest concentration of that magic 80s perfume ingredient that amps up the all the notes. Some kind of musk or maybe ambergris- whatever it is it gives the perfume a deep earthy richness that a white floral on its own could never attain. Add to those notes some smoky incense and a whisper civet to elevate this to a dangerously sexy perfume. The notes are a veritable laundry list of ingredients, but it is the middle floral notes that are to die for elegant and gorgeous- jasmine, gardenia, tuberose, freesia, orris, narcissus and ylang ylang. Seriously? Wow.
This is a madame going out to the opera kind of perfume and I feel like I should have red glossy fingernails and lips when I wear it. It starts out with a bang then just melts into the skin. The parfum or extrait is ideal as you only need a few dabs to last all night.  This is the perfect way to wear those 80s scents as opposed to spraying the air all around you and creating a cloud of fragrance that can frighten horses. Panthere parfum warms up beautifully on the skin, and the sillage stays close to the body, and invites you in to smell more. The tonka and vanilla add a sweetness that is practically mouth watering. It is the ultimate white floral perfume for cooler weather. When a dewy jasmine or gardenia just isn’t enough, Panthere ups the ante by making these flowers emanate heat when they hit skin. Meow.
black-panther1
Yes, Panthere is a visceral perfume experience. If you like a real grown up perfume not for the shy, then I recommend you track some down. I imagine there has been reformulation since the 80s as most of the ingredients in this perfume have been regulated or banned. I think the vintage eau de perfume would also be lovely, but since I stumbled upon this beauty I chose parfum. I got the 15ml ligne de voyage bottle, which is a small but heavy glass bottle that feels like cut crystal. Even the act of taking off the cap and dabbing behind my ear feels uber feminine. I’m sharpening my talons right now.
Gently Beautiful- Etro Heliotrope

Gently Beautiful- Etro Heliotrope

Etro’s Heliotrope, with notes of heliotrope, sweet almond, vanilla, orange blossom, ylang-ylang, and petit grain, is the perfect scent to wear to when you want to feel cozy. It’s sweet without being cloying and candy-ish and warm without being redolent with spices.
Heliotrope is slightly powdery but in a good way. The scent of almond adds to the powdery softness of the heliotrope, and the vanilla makes it slightly sweeter and maybe a tiny bit alcoholic- maybe it reminds me a bit of Amaretto. Heliotrope is an interesting flower that is often talked about as having a “cherry pie” scent. I sometimes find cherry and almond share a similar scent so maybe that is what gives it that Amaretto/marzipan scent.
Petit grain adds just enough sharpness in the dry down to keep this scent from turning into your baby powder, giving it a decidedly grown up and modern edge. The orange blossom and ylang ylang come through in the dry down as gentle delicate clean flowers.
This is a perfect perfume for the crisp days of fall.  Those clear days with fiery leaves and bright-blue skies and the cloudy grey days when the leaves are the only light around.

Funny, I wore Heliotrope in the summer and it was much more floral, with the vanillic sweetness taking a back seat. It is chameleonic that way so perhaps it will only get better as the weather gets colder. I also think this would be a wonderful scent to wear after a long day full of stress and headaches. It’s so calming and sweet, comforting, the perfume equivalent of a hug. How beautiful.